It is election day. I am sitting on the floor with the computer in my lap and watching a borrowed TV. I have to continually switch internet connections between leeching off a neighborhood wireless connection and when that’s not available, a free 10 hours on Juno dialup.
Let us start with a typical Pakistani election slogan:
جیتے گا بھئی جیتے گا کیری ہمارا جیتے گا۔
I expect the election to be very close. My last minute prediction for the result is Kerry by 279—259 (with Kerry winning Florida, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Minnesota, and Wisconsin). I’ll update that as the results come in.
2:19pm : According to Drudge,
Kerry campaign finds comfort in first batch of exit polls.
Daily Kos has some exit poll numbers which look good for Kerry.
6:20pm : Mystery Pollster warns against relying on the leaked exit poll data.
The results start coming in in another 40 minutes. There is a time sheet based table here.
7:07pm : The first 4 results were expected since they were safe. Bush leads 34—3. My prediction stays the same as before. I am surprised South Carolina wasn’t called yet. Virginia is also expected to go for Bush but hasn’t been called either.
7:39pm : West Virginia goes to Bush. North Carolina and Ohio still in play. Actual electoral votes are now 39—3 for Bush. My prediction hasn’t changed a bit.
7:58pm : Slate has some late afternoon exit poll numbers which are very encouraging for Kerry.
8:20pm : It’s 77—66 for Kerry now. My former (by 2 days) home state of New Jersey has been called for Kerry. Surprise Undecideds: Kansas, Mississippi, and Missouri.
8:40pm : North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia finally called for Bush. Bush leads 102—77 right now, but that’s expected.
Bush leads 1,158,153—971,176 in Florida with 23% of the precints reporting. Captain Arrrgh, I won’t worry about that since as CNN showed a county map of Florida, most of the counting has been done in Bush counties. It is instructive to compare to the 2000 map. Broward and Miami-Dade still have not reported anything.
9:08pm : Nothing surprising yet. No battleground states have been called. Bush leads 155—112 right now.
9:38pm : Colorado’s Amendment 36 defeated. So Colorado’s electoral votes won’t be divided.
10:22pm : Bush leads 193—112. Amber is panicking, but no problems yet. Bush leads in Florida by 180,000 votes with 73.7% precints reporting. The Senate will remain in Republican hands, it seems.
11:05pm : Kerry wins Pennsylvania. Florida does not look good though. With California called by the networks for Kerry, Bush’s lead has narrowed to 197—188.
12:03am : Florida is over. Everything now depends on Ohio. Without Ohio, Kerry loses.
12:29am : Colorado goes to Bush while Oregon and Washington to Kerry. The score is now 246—207 for Bush. It’s an uphill task for Kerry now.
12:43am : Some guy in Columbus, OH on CNN is saying that people are still voting over there. The polls closed at 7:30pm. That is a more than 5 hour long line.
12:50am : Minnesota and New Hampshire go to Kerry. It’s now 246—221 for Bush.
1:06am : All that’s left now is for the fat lady to sing. Bush’s lead in Ohio has shrunk but it still seems strong enough. Fox News has already called Ohio for Bush.
1:11am : Here’s an interesting article about the global monitors observing the US elections.
11:08am : We get the leaders we deserve and deserve the leaders we get. That is probably more true for a democracy like the US.